Today is the last day of my my blogger advice series! I hope you guys have been finding it helpful! Today’s advice is going to be a little different; these tips are mostly my personal preferences, things that probably not every blogger does, but that have definitely helped me take my blogging to the next level.
So let’s get to it!
#4- Don’t feel like you have to follow back
There are going to be times where someone follows you who just isn’t in love with the same genres you are. Or maybe they run more of a writing blog, but you’re very reading focused. Or sometimes, it just seems pretty obvious that they followed you only so you would follow them back (I mean, maybe that bike shop blog that followed me a while ago was really interested in the fantasy ravings of a tiny young adult lady, who knows?).
The point is, some blogs just aren’t for you, and that’s okay! Really investing time into blog-hopping and following someone else’s blog is time consuming, so you want to make sure you’re following people whose content you enjoy. I usually at least check out every blog that follows me, because it’s a great way to discover new blogs, but don’t feel guilty if you don’t follow them back.
#3- Find a good word limit for your posts
For me, I limit all my book reviews to 500 words or less, and I do my best to keep my discussion posts under 1000 words.
This is helpful to your readers because, in most cases, people aren’t willing to read a huge block of text. There are some topics that really need a longer post to be done well, and sometimes, you can get away with longer posts by breaking it up with gifs and photos. But I’ll out myself here: there have been times when I’ve gotten halfway through a looong post, and gave up. I gave the post a like and walked away.
Yes, I’m an awful book blogger. But, like I said, I only have so much time in my day, so if I could read and comment on three other posts in the time it takes me to read one long post, I’m more likely to skip it. (If you’re talking about something that needs more time, try breaking it up into a series of posts).
But this also helps you. Having a word limit in the back of your mind helps keep your posts from getting too rambly and makes it easier for you to decide what really does and doesn’t need to be part of a post. A lot of times, I could go on for PAGES about whatever book I’m reviewing, but my 500-word limit helps me sort out what details are a must-have.
#2- Use “I” whenever you can
This idea is a little hard for me to explain, so I’m going to give you guys an example from my post a couple weeks ago:
When I first wrote the post, I wrote:
Your featured images are what will grab people’s attention. You can have the best layout and the catchiest titles, but the images are what will actually make other bloggers stop to read those titles and explore that layout.
But, because I have this rule about using “I” when I can, I changed it to this:
Your featured images are what will grab my attention. You can have the best layout and the catchiest titles, but the images are what will actually make me stop to read those titles and explore that layout.
It’s a reeeeally tiny thing, but using “I” instead of “people” or a general “you” helps me seem more personable (I think), like I want my readers to know me better. Plus, it keeps me from speaking for others; I have no idea if other people are drawn in by good images or if I’m just shallow. I don’t know why I’m such a stickler about this when I write my posts, but it’s just one of those tiny details that I find really adds an extra something to blog posts.
#1- Every once in a while, read a book you have no intention of reviewing
I know, I know, that’s what book bloggers do: we read and review books.
But writing book reviews is hard work; most reviews take me at least an hour and a half to write by the time I go from 0 words on the page to edited and ready to post. And there’s a lot of work that goes into that hour and a half. You don’t want to write so many reviews that you start to hate reviewing.
And you don’t want to write so many reviews that you start to hate reading. I know that would probably never happen, but my biggest reading slump happened this summer, because I had so many books I planned to review. It’s not necessarily that I didn’t want to read them, but I kept putting off reading because I didn’t want to have to write the review afterward.
Plus, the reviewing process sometimes bleeds into how I read a book. Because I’m planning on writing a review, I’m keeping track of what I did/didn’t like, looking for quotes I can use in my review, what are some great character aspects I can mention, etc. Every once in a while, it’s nice to read a book that I can go into with no expectations, and read it just for the enjoyment of reading.
Thanks for reading!
Were any of these tips helpful? What are some of the tiny details that make you a happy camper? Do you read every book you read? Any advice to add? Let me know in the comments below!